Best Things to Do in Cabo San Lucas

Adventures by Air, Land or Sea: The Best Activities in Los Cabos

Los Cabos is a paradise for active types, with world-class conditions for water sports such as fishing, diving, sailing, windsurfing and kiteboarding, and challenging desert and mountain terrain for camping and hiking enthusiasts. Less active types, meanwhile, will appreciate the surfeit of pampering spas and stellar shopping in the downtown districts of cape cities Cabo San Lucas and San José del Cabo.

Our top choice, A-Maze-In Cabo Race, provides a unique introduction to the landscape and landmarks of Los Cabos. Much like the reality series Amazing Race, participants strive to decipher puzzles and clues – often involving local bars, restaurants and beaches – in an attempt to be first to the finish line. This fun-filled sightseeing concept has become one of the area’s most popular activities options, and it’s not unusual to see teams dashing through the downtown streets of Cabo San Lucas.

Intrepid sorts will enjoy Cabo Expeditions, which offers an innovative array of land and water-based eco-activities, ranging from undersea helmet diving and snuba (a hybrid of snorkeling and scuba) to city tours and day trips to the uninhabited Isla Espíritu Santo off the coast of Baja California Sur's capital city of La Paz. Aficionados of adrenaline-pumping experiences, meanwhile, will love Cabo Adventure's thrilling new off-road adventure, which offers challenging high-speed treks across rugged desert terrain.


Enjoy incredible aerial views of Médano Beach, Pedregal, Land's End, The Arch, and Bahía San Lucas from a motorized ultralight. Pilot Ernesto Magaña has close to 30 years of flying experience, and offers some of Cabo San Lucas' most exhilarating tours. Depending on your fear factor, there are basically two settings: smooth and extreme. Extreme is recommended. Either way, this is a sightseeing dream, with stunning views of all the local landmarks from a thousand feet in the air. Tour durations range from 10 minutes (Land's End Tour) to one hour (King Sky Tour), with the latter including a jaunt to San José del Cabo.

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Cuadra San Francisco is one of the Los Cabos area's hidden gems, offering virtually every equine-related activity imaginable: trail rides over local terrain, romantic rides along secluded beaches, carriage rides for weddings or special events...even polo lessons. The late Francisco Barrera trained under Nuno Oliveira, the Portuguese legend considered by many to be the most outstanding horseman of the 20th century, and his son Valente excels at teaching dressage, and the traditional techniques of Mexican vaqueros. The stables are located in the Tourist Corridor, just off the Cabo Real Golf course, and maintain close to fifty horses. Pony-sized horses with special saddles are available for kids, who can take lessons in either riding or archery.

Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Cuadra San Francisco is the best and only fully equipped Equestrian Center in Los Cabos.

Chris's expert tip: Pony sized horses are available for kids.

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Few local adventure companies can match Cabo Expedtions' variety of eco-themed activities, which include whale watching and swimming with whale sharks (seasonal), parasailing, snorkeling, kayaking, and day trips to Isla Espíritu Santo off the coast of La Paz. Perhaps the best thing about the company's collection of land and water based activities is that they cover a good portion of Baja California Sur, and thus provide visitors with wide-ranging introductions to the area's incredible bio-diversity. A snorkel/dive hybrid called "snuba" is a great choice for kids, since it requires no certifications, and allows ample time underwater (about 30 minutes) to appreciate the abundance of colorful fish and fauna in offshore waters.

Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: This is one of the top activities companies in Los Cabos, with land and water based adventures that explore the beauties of Baja California Sur.

Chris's expert tip: Week-long snorkel and kayak tours explore UNESCO protected islands near Loreto and La Paz.

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Los Cabos has drawn a host of legendary names to design the ever-increasing number of championship-level loops in the region, but nonpareil golfer Jack Nicklaus was the one who put the area on the map. The Ocean Course at Cabo del Sol is considered by many to be his masterwork, and is currently ranked as one of the top 100 courses in the world. Nicklaus himself has called it "the best golf property I've ever seen." Cabo del Sol is first-class in every respect, with dramatic vistas of desert, mountain and sea, and seven holes bordering the Sea of Cortés. The Ocean Course plays long at 7075 yards, with plenty of elevation changes and undulating greens to challenge both high and low handicappers.

Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Jack Nicklaus' Ocean Course at Cabo del Sol has been ranked as one of the world's 100 best golf courses.

Chris's expert tip: The 17th is possibly the most spectacular hole on the course, with an elevated cliff-top tee box and incredible views of the Sea of Cortez. This is a good spot for photo opportunities, as well as last minute appeals to the golfing gods.

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The Baja California peninsula hosts the most famous off-road race on the planet, the rugged and challenging Baja 1000. Over the years, scores of Los Cabos based activities companies have attempted to replicate this experience on a smaller scale, but few have succeeded quite like Cabo Adventures. Their new Off-Road Adventure is a complete blast, thanks in large part to the outstanding course layout, which features everything from bumps, jumps and water hazards to switchbacks and spectacular Pacific Ocean views. There are even a few cows and horses wandering around as driver's attempt to steer their Polaris high performance vehicles safely through winding, cactus-strewn desert terrain. Not content with mere thrills, Cabo Adventures adds a culinary dimension at the end, serving up delicious, all-you-can-eat sopes (a traditional Mexican favorite) in a breezy beachfront dining area.

Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Cabo Adventures' new off-road tour is one of the most fun-filled ways to soak up Los Cabos' spectacular coastal scenery.

Chris's expert tip: Drivers and passengers alike will finish this adventure both wet and extremely dusty, so dress accordingly.

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Cabo San Lucas was built on big-game sportfishing, and even the most amateur of anglers will want to take their chances with the local population of marlin, sailfish and tuna. Pisces Sportfishing maintains one of the top fishing fleets, with a large variety of boats that range from pangas to large sportfishers and luxury yachts. All of their charters include fishing licenses, ice, fuel, bait, tackle, crew, box lunches and beverages. The crews are very experienced, and Pisces is much respected both for their catch totals and for their conservation efforts. They promote catch and release policies, and not only has the International Game Fish Association awarded them a Lifetime Achievement Award for their efforts, but several of their captains have earned the coveted Billfish Foundation Award for Most Striped Marlin Released Worldwide Yearly. Charters are generally about eight hours long, but custom departure times are available.

Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Cabo San Lucas was built on big-game sportfishing, and Pisces is one of the area's most respected charter companies.

Chris's expert tip: Pisces will deliver your catch to Captain Tony's on the Marina, where they're happy to cook it up any way you like.

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Long considered one of the benchmark spas in all of Latin America, The Spa at Esperanza is particularly noted for its romantic couples' treatments, but also boasts signature therapies like the Pasaje de Agua, a water based experience that combines a warm-spring soaking pool, steam caves and a cool waterfall rinse. A new outdoor relaxation area is one of many new features that have been added since the spa's post Hurricane Odile makeover. Gym and yoga facilities are also available, and the integrated wellness program now includes approximately 35 classes per week. Well-known fitness instructors from the U.S. and Canada are featured several times per year.

Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Esperanza's spa is regularly rated as the best in all of Latin America.

Chris's expert tip: The Spa at Esperanza offers an array of romantic couples treatments.

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The 144' luxury catamaran Caborey is the premier cruise ship in Los Cabos, best known for its perennially popular margarita and dinner cruises. The dinner cruise is one of the great local dining experiences, particularly for those who are in town for a short time and want to get a feel for the local landscape, culture and cuisine. Enjoy romantic sunset views of Cabo San Lucas Bay, Médano and Lovers' Beaches, and the unique rock formations such as El Arco that stretch out towards Land's End. There are two belowdecks areas for dinner, depending upon your ticket preference. There is a buffet on the middle deck, and a sit-down dinner on the lower deck with a choice of entrées. After the sit-down dinner, there is a rousing Las Vegas-style floor show featuring Mexican and Latin American singing and folk dances, headlined by a passionately romantic Argentine style tango.

Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Caborey hosts the area's best dinner cruises, with live entertainment and high-end cuisine.

Chris's expert tip: One of the highlights of the dinner cruise is the postprandial floor show featuring Latin American singing and dancing.

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Dolphin swims are among the most popular tickets in town. There are actually several ways to experience these delightful and intelligent creatures: encounters, swims and the more in-depth trainer for a day program. The encounters occur in shallow water, and are recommended for young children, pregnant women and the elderly. Swims aren't very physically demanding, either, as the dolphins do all the work, with visitors hanging onto their pectoral or dorsal fins as they zip around the large pool. The pool is quite cool, by the way, as it has to be maintained at a temperature comfortable for the dolphins. Wetsuits are provided.

Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: Dolphin swims are among the best kid-friendly activities in Los Cabos.

Chris's expert tip: All Cabo Dolphins tours are assigned a photographer, and dolphin swims and encounters are exhaustively and professionally photographed.

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Based on a concept similar to that to the popular reality television show Amazing Race, A-Maze-In Cabo Race is at heart a tour around the city that offers participants an introduction to the area's signature sights, as well as a few lesser known landmarks. This is no typical self-guided tour, however. It's a fun-filled adventure/competition, with teams consisting of couples, family members or friends racing to decipher clues, solve puzzles and win interactive challenges in an effort to be first to the finish line. In addition to their classic race tour, A-Maze-In Cabo Race also offers fun-filled pub crawls, as well as tours custom tailored for birthdays, bachelorette parties, weddings, and team building exercises. Race briefings are held at Giggling Marlin in downtown Cabo San Lucas.

Recommended for Best Attractions & Activities because: The classic race tour is one of the most popular activities in Los Cabos.

Chris's expert tip: Tour prices include race materials, logo bandanas, bottled water, and snacks and drinks at the finish line celebration.

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Meet Chris Sands

Chris Sands is the Cabo San Lucas local expert for the USA Today travel website 10 Best, co-writer of Fodor's Los Cabos travel guidebook, and a contributor to numerous websites and...  More About Chris